Anime Best in Show

Review: Fruits Basket Season 2 Episode 10 Best in Show

Quick Summary

In Fruits Basket Season 2 episode 10, “Who Are You,” Tohru Honda learns that the Soumas meeting with Akito Souma was not the happy occasion she’d imagined it to be. She overhead a conversation between Kyou Souma and Momiji Souma, and the reality terrified her. She quickly hid her fear under her usual aura of cheerfulness. Meanwhile, Akito was trying to deal with a rising rage at the influence Tohru exerted on the Souma family. The rage boiled over, and Akito snuck out to pay a nighttime visit to the vacation house. Sensing what Akito was trying to do, Momiji Souma tried to protect Tohru — and incurred Akito’s wrath. What will Akito do to Momiji in order to get to Tohru? And just what does Akito plan to do to Tohru?

Note: This post may include spoilers, so be cautious.

Best Moment in the Show: Tohru Declares Her Mission

Tohru declares her intent to go to war with a god. And you know what? My money’s on Tohru. Capture from the Crunchyroll stream.

This episode delivered the confrontation hinted at way back in Season 1 episode 12, when Tohru put herself between Yuki Souma and Akito. She’d been terrified then, even though she only dimly perceived the extent of Akito’s malice. In this episode, the confrontation was much more intense. And much more personal.

We’ve watched Akito barely remain in control over the last couple of episodes. I think during the interviews with the Souma family members, Akito became more and unstable as it became more and more apparent how much positive influence Tohru had on the entire family. Well, we’d call it positive. Akito called it disruptive, ugly, or presumptuous. Finally, the head of the Souma family snapped.

I don’t want to focus on the confrontation — I don’t want to talk about how darling, tender-hearted Momiji Souma stood up to Akito and received a back-hand so powerful that it drew blood. I don’t want to talk about how Tohru tried to reason with Akito — tried even to sympathize — and received a level of verbal and physical abuse that left her on her knees with blood oozing from the scratches Akito left on her face. I don’t want to talk about how she realized that no, Akito wasn’t the Zodiac Rooster — Akito was the Zodiac god. And I don’t want to talk about how Tohru finally understood all of the power the Akito wielded over the family.

Tohru understood the power that Akito had over the rest of the family. And to demonstrate the irresistible force of goodness and warmth that is Tohru, she realized that not only does the curse bind all of the Zodiac. It also binds Akito. Capture from the Crunchyroll stream.

And I won’t mention that the notes I took for this episode included the phrase “orbital bombardment” twice. No lie.

I want to focus on what Tohru did after living through all of that.

It was the morning after the confrontation. She wore a bandage on her cheek. She sat on Momiji’s bed as he slept peacefully beside her. He had gauze taped to the wound on his cheek. The sun was just beginning to shine through the opening in the curtains. Looking at her dear friend, gentle Tohru said (17:18), “I want to protect them. I’ll protect them no matter what. I… will…”

Akito hadn’t cowed her at all. If anything, the head of the family clarified her mission. And if there was any doubt, Tohru finally said, “I want to break the curse.”

I used to joke that Tanjirou from Demon Slayer was Tohru in combat form. I have a feeling she’s about to demonstrate her own form of combat that would make Tanjirou proud. In a conflict between Tohru and Akito, even if Akito is a god, my money’s on Tohru.

What did you think of Hatsuharu “Haru” Souma physically restraining Kyou from going after Akito to protect Tohru? What was your Best in Show moment? Let me know in the comments!

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6 thoughts on “Review: Fruits Basket Season 2 Episode 10 Best in Show

  1. I mean we are dealing with… A god here so even if saki is an incredible asset, the things akito can do are probably endless.

    But even akito could have a weakness, it could have something to do with those tiny flashbacks we saw.

    In any case breaking the curse wont be an easy path

  2. Chances are if hatsuharu didnt stop kyo, akito would probably take him to confiment at that point already.

    And i cant shake off the feeling that breaking the curse is gonna be something very complex and hard to do, is it gonna be even possible for tohru? The other commenter here made great points with arisa and saki, now im getting scared, akito vs saki with arisa providing fighting support? Probably not gonna happen that way, but arisa having a sort of link with kureno will surely have importance, and saki really is a great person to have by your side if you need to be protected.

    1. “The other commenter here made great points with arisa and saki, now im getting scared, akito vs saki with arisa providing fighting support?”

      Seriously, with how nonchalantly Saki broke the fourth wall, I’m not sure what a conflict between her and Akito would look like.

      And we’ve seen her power is no joke.

      Arisa would be good in a fight — but who would she fight? We can see that Akito has power to bind the Zodiac to him. Does he have the power to make them fight on his behalf? Momiji certainly stood up for Tohru. Was that just because of the influence Tohru had on him? If her influence is diminished, then what?

      I love how a story can drive these kinds of conversations!

  3. Ah man, this was a hard watch. You probably know that I find Momiji extremely annoying. But I also find him extremely likable, and in his quieter moments I have nothing to say against him. Boy, did I feel bad for him to be caught in that moment. The physical hit wasn’t that bad, but: “You want to understand me? What a joke! You look down on me like everyone else.” or something to the effect. That’s the point when you realise you can’t do anything at all. Akito is talking to himself and to himself only. He’s lost complete faith in each and everyone.

    I was prepared for this episode. It pretty much confirmed a lot (at least to my mind) of what I said last week, so I had no reveals. But even pretty much knowing what was coming can’t prepare you for the emotional input. Akito is such a powerful tragic villain, and I recoil as much from him as I want to see him heal.

    And you know what the show, all this while, has only hinted at? Tohru’s own inner demons. Her near-reckless selflessness. I can’t see Akito falling for Tohru as the rest of them did. He doesn’t seem to even understand kindness; it’s not got a place in his worldview. It’s all phony. Everyone who’s being kind wants something. And, well, it’s true to an extent – everyone wants something, and that includes people being kind, but that doesn’t make kindness a front. And now take Tohru, who seems to have forgotten how to want things for herself. That’s exactly the problem that’s been pointed out early on again and again (most prominently by Kyou). There’s a horrible, dysfunctional compatibility here: an awful, destructive chemistry between Akito and Tohru: both stab at each other’s weakpoint in the worst possible manner. If Tohru’s realisation that she, too, wants things for herself comes in a confrontation with Akito? Oh, boy.

    I have a hunch we’re all going to be very grateful in future episodes that Tohru has got Arisa and Saki on her side. They’ve already set up Arisa with rooster boy – the one closest to Akito, it seems, to open up that angle. Though, if they also choose to develop Saki’s jealous side, a confrontation between her and Akito could spell disaster: she’s perfectly capable of throwing the entire Sohma clan under bus if it’s for Tohru, and if she doesn’t catch herself the way she has in earlier episodes… Honestly, I’m frightened.

    1. “That’s the point when you realise you can’t do anything at all.”

      Yeah, this episode drove that point home with almost brutal energy.

      “Akito is such a powerful tragic villain, and I recoil as much from him as I want to see him heal.”

      That’s part of what is so great about the character. Between Akito’s cruel actions and Tohru’s gracious and warm response, I found myself questioning why I reacted so violently to Akito’s attack. It’s like part of me lost sight of the tragic aspect and just wanted to lash out on Tohru’s behalf. But her reaction, and your observation, make me realize that the narrative was making a point about… forgiveness? Making allowances? It’s like I adore Kagura, but she’s prone to violent outbursts. Why do I accept it from her and not Akito? Well, part of the answer is intent. Kagura just gets too worked up and can’t control herself. She doesn’t _mean_ anything cruel. Akito, though, well that’s a different story.

      Yet, forgiveness should still play a role, shouldn’t it? At least, if Tohru, as the target of the attack, decides forgiveness is worth pursing, then that’s her call, isn’t it?

      “Tohru’s own inner demons. Her near-reckless selflessness.”

      I’ve not read the manga, so I’m dying to know what’s in her past. A few episodes ago, she was sitting outside, in the dark, her back against the wall, barely keeping herself together. What happened?

      “If Tohru’s realisation that she, too, wants things for herself comes in a confrontation with Akito? Oh, boy.”

      I really like how this series builds character drama.

      “she’s perfectly capable of throwing the entire Sohma clan under bus if it’s for Tohru, and if she doesn’t catch herself the way she has in earlier episodes… Honestly, I’m frightened.”

      You know, I could make a joke about Saki going after the author, since she (adeptly!) broke the fourth wall in the first season. But I think you make a great point here. Just how powerful _is_ Saki? Because you’re absolutely right: she’ll do _anything_ to protect Tohru.

      I can only think of a handful of shows that can generate this much excitement for me after so many episodes. They is what, the 35th episode? That’s good stuff!

      1. Well, Kagura may be violent, but she’s not emotionally abusive. We still know very little of her, so it’s hard to compare.

        But yeah, it’s hard to find the right words here. Forgiveness is a start, but it doesn’t quite hit home for me. And making allowances? Maybe, but it also dances around the issue. What Akito does is obviously and unexcusably abusive. It’s just that it’s also self-abusive, and that’s important to understand if you formulate a strategy. I think Shigure has a good strategy, even if a risky one, but what I’m really worried here is his goal. But I’m not really only talking about strategy here. Emotionally, there’s part of me that wants to get as far away as possible from Akito, but I’d also like to see him heal (and also sort of for him self). If I were invovled in the plot, a character so to speak, that’d be an inner conflict, because I’d wish him well, but I wouldn’t want to be part of the solution, and I’d doubt my wishing well (am I a hypocrite?) and I’d feel guilty for the latter (I failed my ideals?). It’s really, really hard to express. I don’t often get that from fictional characters. It’s a testament to how well the show portrays this. I don’t remember feeling like this in the first adaption, but then the first adaption never got to that point, so who knows?

        I wonder how the curse started.

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